Le Papillon wouldn’t be le papillon without my time and discovered adoration for French lifestyle and décor, especially French country décor, gained from my travels to France spanning over the past 20+ years (explore all of my posts about my travels here in TSLL’s French-inspired posts Archives). And with the completion of the customizations on my house concluded this summer with the foyer and front screen door, I thought I would go back through all of the rooms and projects and spotlight 10 décor details I have included inspired directly from my love of France and French travels.
While sunflowers technically don’t count as permanent décor, this photo above with Nelle takes me back to summertime in Provence, and is probably why I always make sure I have sowed a profusely large amount of sunflower seeds in my garden each May. If I cannot be in France during the summer months, at least I can imagine the beauty that can be found there and that seems ubiquitous as one wanders about the country by train, foot or car during the height of summer.
Let’s take a look at the list of French décor details found throughout my home Le Paillon, large and small, that continually remind me of the country and culture that has my heart in so many ways and for so many reasons.
0. French candles
Need I say more. 🙂
I initially began writing this post with nine items on the list, and when I selected the photo above, I immediately noticed the one glaringly obvious French detail I had forgotten that is continuously on display and in use in my house – candles! So we begin with zero. 😉
In TSLL’s 2019 French Week I shared the 10 French candles that I love, and I continue to forever and always have French candles stocked in my candle cupboard with one or two placed throughout the home at all times.
Whether on the tea table in the living room reading nook, in my bedroom or a petite candle in my office snug, having the beeswax candles sharing their scents adds a subtle, yet comforting natural seasonal fragrance to the room in which I find myself.
Be sure to check out the post mentioned above to shop all of the candles and read details about why I enjoy each one, ranked in order of preference.
Speaking of my candle cupboard, in preparation for la rentrée, on my to-do list is to add a few more candles to make sure I am stocked up for the fall and winter season, and so this list came in very handy and is one to save in your personal TSLL library (simply click “add to favorites” under the blog post title once you are logged into your account).
1.Copper in the kitchen
Long-time readers of the blog and viewers of TSLL’s cooking show, The Simply Luxurious Kitchen, will not be surprised by this French detail.
Gathered from brocantes I have shopped while traveling in Provence, Paris and Normandy, purchased in Paris at E.Dehillerin, as well as purchased through Rabbit Hill Lifestyle’s online monthly shop, picked up here at a secondhand shop in Bend and gifted to me by my parents, my copper family finds come from an eclectic background of sources which makes me love each piece, and thus the working collection, all the more.
Some I use more than others. For example, my 10″ Mauviel skillet given to me by my parents for my first Christmas in Bend is used every single morning for my go-to breakfast, while the 12″ skillet purchased in Paris during my first trip to shop at the famed and beloved cooking utensil shop E.Dehillerin is used more often for dinner parties. The rest are all second-hand – consignment, refurbished, brocante-treasures – and even my teapot, as anyone who has read my latest book knows (did you see it on the cover of The Road to Le Papillon?), was a mere €39 at a brocante in Vaison-la-Romaine (read more about finding it and retinning it here).
With all of that said, I love cooking with copper, and am fully converted to cooking with it regularly as it heats up quickly, distributes heat evenly and is actually quite simple to keep polished with the right approach (I share mine below). However, even if you use them often, just as I do, and of course they will lose their polish, they are a sign of a kitchen that is used and cooking that is enjoyed.
~Take the full kitchen tour here, complete with before, afters and objectives.
2. Match strikers
A handful of years ago, I wrote a post about a small detail that makes sense both aesthetically and functionally for anyone who loves candles in their home (or incense) as much as I do. Invite the match striker in to your décor.
Now you can easily find well-priced options online as many of the ones I have are just that, but I have had on my list of treasure-hunting items to find a vintage match striker, and such a find is not typically all that cheap, but well worth bringing into your home.
Read my detailed post about this décor detail to include and I absolutely love in the linked post below. And important to note: In the photo below the matches have white tips on the top (this end of the match should actually be revered and placed into the striker, making the matches easier to grab and strike quickly). So long as your matches are ‘strike-anywhere matches’ (the white tops being the hint that that is what they are), then they will work with any match striker.
3. A French country wingback armchair
Consignment finds that welcome your favorite décor aesthetics into your home.
Such was the case with my office reading snug chair seen here. As I share in more detail in the tour post (linked below), the key is to find the structure you like and disregard the fabric currently on the item as you can reupholster. This wingback chair is very sturdy, quite large and after choosing my fabric and having it recovered, it looks like a brand new chair. There’s something super comforting and cozy about snuggling into a wingback, grabbing your cuppa and a good book.
Take a tour of the office (before, afters and objectives) here.
4. A Traversin
A wonderful detail that my friend and interior designer Veronique, who grew up in Belgium, taught me was the detail of a traversin (aka a bolster). Sized to whatever length and diameter you need/want, this decor detail is quintessential French, and I love the softness, yet finishing touch it brings to my Primary bedroom. Take a tour of TSLL’s Primary bedroom, before, after and objectives here.
Read a detailed post on how and why to add a Traversing (aka Bolster) to your décor.
5. French market totes as décor
One of the most frequently shared rooms on in my house on IG is the Boot & Baskets room, and the baskets really are the stars of the show. Seen below just after my bench cushion was recovered in an Anna French arbre print, they bring the eye up and also provide a safe place to store them. Every basket is used throughout the year for different tasks and outings, and if you haven’t already entered the two giveaways (2nd and 3rd) giving away two of the baskets you see here, be sure you do before Saturday at noon (Pacific)!
Take a tour of the Mudroom/Boot & Basket room here and learn all about the hooks, wallpaper, bench and more.
6. Framed photos of favorite vistas and views in France
A simple décor detail to welcome our love of France into our homes is to frame our photos captured during our travels. Whether we have found our forever home or not, these treasures can come with us wherever we roam.
I took the photo below (right-side) during my first trip to Provence capturing a cobbled pathway (even cars drive on this believe it or not) in the vieux ville (or haute ville as it is up a hill from the main, more contemporary town center) of Vaison-la-Romaine. A path I walked on many times going back and forth to the town square where I would either pick up a croissant for my morning breakfast, stroll the markets (including a Brocante on Sunday), or just explore, before heading back up to my vacation rental in the haute ville.
With white linen matting and a rustic white frame, these photos were completed and framed before I found Le Papillon, but I immediately knew where I wanted to hang them when I arrived at my forever home. Each time I walk past them and take a look, I am reminded of the beautiful memories of my travels, whether to France or Britain (background photo).
Photos captured during my first visit to Claude Monet’s Giverny are framed with linen matting and bamboo.
7. Linen curtains
It was during my stay at a beautifully decorated vacation rental in the Golden Triangle in the Luberon (Provence) that I fell in love with the subtle sophistication and polish linen curtains lend to a space. (Tour Villa Dæch here.) Beginning with using linen tablecloths from H & M in my rental, and then graduating these past couple of years to custom linen curtains in my dining room and primary bathroom, there is something all-seasonal about linen that when the right color is chosen for the space, creates a timeless aesthetic and most definitely is French-inspired.
You will notice in the two photos below that you can either line them or not. Either way, the linen drapes beautifully. Depending upon the opaqueness you desire, line or not, but either way, I am confident you will be pleased that you addd linen to your décor.
Take a tour of TSLL’s Primary Bathroom remodel, complete with linen curtains.
8. Tassels and tiebacks
Now that I know about tassels as they relate to curtain tie-backs, I see them everywhere in films and French decor. 🙂
Veronique Waldron, the interior designer I worked with to help me add the finishing touches when it came to upholstery and curtains to my home, introduced me to tassels for my kitchen curtain and I immediately said yes. I will be writing a detailed post later this week about how to use tassels and tie-backs and the benefit of including them your décor, but needless to say, they are definitely a French component in my home, Le Papillon.
Explore the sourcing of these tassels and tieback from Houlès Paris, based in Paris in the detailed tour post of TSLL’s Kitchen Door Curtain in a Cozy Cookbook Library Nook
9. A La Cornue stove
Last but not least, the inclusion of my stove, a stove from La Cornue’s La Cornufe home line (shop here as well), is the French décor detail that I love and am most grateful to have in my home. As I share in the detailed post about my decision to include this particular brand in my kitchen, it was Albert Dupuy in 1908, in the heart of Paris, who premiered the world’s first convection oven that became La Cornue. So much history resides in this brand when it comes to French cooking and cuisine, and tie in Julia Child (it was a La Cornue stove she and Paul purchased and she cooked on in their home La Pitchoune in Provence for the second volume of Mastering the Art of French Cooking – you can see her stove in the photo to the left of my stove), and well, the deal was sealed. If I could, I was going to remodel my kitchen and include my dream stove. Thankfully, I had the opportunity.
I call it my third arm, because I am using the stove at least two times a day, usually three, and it is as analog as it comes, which is what I love about it. Well made, easy to use, and beautiful to the eye.
Take a tour of my journey to deciding upon this style of stove from La Cornue and why it is the stove that is the best fit for my kitchen and life.
No doubt I have forgotten other French deéor details found in my home, but that gives me the opportunity to share in a future post down the road. I hope these ideas provided inspiration for you as you welcome a touch (or a lot) of the French décor aesthetics and culture that you love.
SIMILAR Décor POSTS YOU MIGHT ENJOY
Explore all of the posts shared during TSLL’s 8th Annual French Week here.